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Poll Analysis
August 22, 2003

Colorado Voters Concerned About Direction of State
Haven’t Been this Pessimistic Since Early 1990s

Analysis by Floyd Ciruli

Not since 1992, at the end of the last major recession, have Colorado voters been as pessimistic as they are today about the direction of the state. In a question regularly asked in Ciruli Associates statewide voter surveys, only 49% of Colorado voters said the state was going in the right direction. Thirty-nine percent said it was on the wrong track.

Question: Overall, would you say things are generally going in the right direction, or do you feel things have gotten pretty seriously off on the wrong track here in Colorado? Surveys were conducted in October or November of year listed with voters.

The “direction of the state” question is part of regular Ciruli Associates reports on state issues. The latest poll was conducted by Ciruli Associates from July 14 to July 22, 2003 with 800 registered voters (±3.4 percentage points).

National Polls
A recent national poll shows voters are even more concerned about the direction of the country. Only 46% of national residents in an August New York Times poll believe the country is going in the right direction and 49% believe it is on the wrong track.

Both nationally and in Colorado, the top issue of concern is the economy (26% in the NY Times poll and 25% in latest Ciruli Associates survey). The high point in Colorado voter optimism was during 1998 at the top of the economic boom.

Republicans More Optimistic about Direction of Colorado
Voter partisanship, income and age are major factors in views on the direction of the state. Sixty-six percent of Republicans believe the state is moving in the right direction (20% believe state on wrong track), but only 30% of Democrats agree. Most Democrats (57%) believe the state is on the wrong track. Unaffiliated voters are in the middle (43% right direction/37% wrong track).

Most voters (58%) with over $80,000 in income per year believe the state is moving in the right direction but only 41% of low-income voters agree.

Young voters are very optimistic. Six in 10 say the state is moving in the right direction. Voters 55 to 64 years old are the most pessimistic (39%).

Characteristics of Colorado Voters
Right Direction and Wrong Track
Wrong track
TOTAL 49% 39%
Republican 66% 20%
18-34 years old 63% 25%
Income $80k plus 58% 32%
Male 53% 34%
35-54 51% 37%
White 50% 37%
$40k-$79k 49% 37%
Hispanic 48% 43%
65 plus 45% 39%
Female 44% 43%
Unaffiliated 43% 45%
Less than $40k 41% 45%
55-64 39% 50%
Democrat 30% 57%
Black 25% 75%
Ciruli Associates, N800, 2003


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